WASHINGTON -- Tomorrow, Senator Chuck Grassley will be hosting officials from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) in Iowa. Grassley asked the EPA to come to Iowa for a first-hand look at family farming, after learning that the government official who heads the department writing the guidelines for “indirect land use changes” has never set foot on an American farm. Gina McCarthy, Assistant Administrator for theOffice of Air and Radiation at EPA, and Margo Oge, Director of theOffice of Transportation and Air Quality at EPA, will be representing the EPA.
Grassley said that despite the fact that
there is no scientific method to determine accurate changes in land use around the globe as a result of U.S. biofuels policies, proposed rules
released by the EPA
relied on incomplete science and inaccurate assumptions to penalize U.S. biofuels for so-called “indirect land use changes.” The final rules are expected to be released late this month.
The day will begin with an information session to discuss low carbon fuel standards, corn and soybean technology as well as the EPA’s AgSTAR program. The group will then move to a family farm to learn about the work farmers are doing to produce safe, quality products in an environmentally friendly manner. Last, the group will visit the Renewable Energy Group’s facility in Newton for a tour and an overview and update from the ethanol and biodiesel industries.
“The EPA has tremendous power and authority, and the decisions it makes on several issues will have a major impact on the rural economy, from the family farm to opportunities in value-added agriculture industries, including renewable energy. It is absolutely essential that the government officials in charge understand the issues and the impact of their rules, regulations and directives,” Grassley said.
For planning purposes, below is the anticipated schedule for the EPA officials’ visit.
8:30 a.m. BioCentury Research Farm
1327 U Avenue, Boone
Welcome and Tour
Corn and Soybean Seed Technology
EPA’s AgSTAR Program
Sensitivities to Indirect Land Use Evaluations and Alternatives
10:15 a.m. Press Availability
11:30 a.m. Kimberley Farm
12787 NE 112th Street, Maxwell
Welcome and Lunch
Corn and Soybean Production Presentations
1:15 p.m. Press Availability
2:00 p.m. Central Iowa Energy Biorefinery
3426 East 28th Street North, Newton
Biodiesel and Ethanol Industry Overview and Challenges
Tour of Biorefinery
3:00 p.m. Press Availability
Contact: Beth Levine with Senator Grassley’s office
202/224-6197 or 202/369-3380